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uncircumcised penisAll men are born with a layer of skin that covers the tip of the penis (glans), called the foreskin or prepuce. At birth, this foreskin serves to shield and protect the delicate glans which can be easily irritated by urine and feces. Males that have this covering of skin removed are referred to as circumcised and those that do not are called uncircumcised. While the decision to circumcise a male depends on many factors including the parent's preference, religion, and geographic location, the need to clean and care for an uncircumcised penis remains vitally important for overall penis health.

When men reach puberty, specialized sebaceous glands located under the foreskin, known as Tyson's Glands, begin to produce an oily substance. This substance when mixed with shed skin cells constitutes what is called "adult smegma". While smegma serves a protective, lubricating function for the glans, a build-up of this material can also release a strong smelling unpleasant odor.

Fortunately, cleaning an uncircumcised penis is a very simple process. After reaching adolescence, uncircumcised men should retract, or pull back, the foreskin and clean underneath it on a daily basis. There is no need for special cleansing with Q-tips or antiseptics as soap and water is sufficient. The following steps explain how to properly cleanse the foreskin:

  • Using very gentle force, pull the foreskin away from the tip of the penis.
  • Rinse both the tip of the penis and the inside part of the foreskin with soap and water.
  • Return the foreskin back to it's original position over the tip of the penis.

This procedure should be done as part of a daily hygiene routine to keep the penis clean and in good health.

Posted by PRS
Friday, July 6th, 2007

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19 Responses to "Caring For The Adult Uncircumcised Penis"

Hi my name is junior and im 19 years old. My penis is uncircumcised and i thinking about having a surgery bc its very uncomportable when im having surgery. Can you please tell me if surgery is possible and how much it cost if it is? thanks a lot!!

Hi Junior,

While foreskin removal is usually performed when males are very young (days after birth), it can in fact be done at any age. Being already circumcised myself, I must admit that I do not know much about the adult circumcision procedure. Your doctor or a Urologist will be better able to advise you of your options.

Here are some websites where you can find more information about the operation:


As far as cost goes, I imagine this will vary depending on your own personal health insurance coverage (and whether this type of surgery is covered at all).

Hey, I am a 26 years old. Was born premature. Till this day I was never taught how to clean my uncircumcised penis. Does this affect me in any way and facts say that cleaning under warm water makes it easier to clean.
Please email me at my email for facts on the proper way I should clean.


Hi Lopez. Cleaning an uncircumcised penis is quite easy. If you read the article above you can see the simple steps that need to be followed. Basically you just need to retract the foreskin from the tip of the penis and wash the area with warm water and a little soap. This should be done daily to prevent the build-up of dead skin cells and to keep the penis clean and fresh.

i am a 18 year old boy,i have two questions, i was just reading this article and i was a wondering if it is ok like if i use cologne too, when i clean it, like after i use the soap and warm water, cuz my gurl likes it to smell fruity.Also, my friend jim is circumsized but now he wants it back,you know to pleasure the ladies, can they do it. Thanks man

Hi Herb. Using cologne on the penis isn't recommended since it contains alcohol. This can cause a very unpleasant burning sensation and also dries out the skin. Instead you may wish to try a scented moisturizing lotion which will both soften the skin and make your penis smell nice.

In regards to your friend Jim, there are methods to restore the foreskin but none are easy. There is a surgical method to reattach the missing skin but it is expensive and somewhat risky. The natural approach commonly involves stretching the existing skin (usually with a special device or tape) but results vary and it may take several years to be effective. You can learn more about the different techniques in this foreskin restoration article.

i found your article very useful, and needed because it is rarely discussed.
I am in my early 30's and i am uncircumcised; great pleasure sensation during sex because my penis head is sensitive to touch and all the nerve ending are cover all day via my foreskin. But my question is that during intercourse my penis gets irritated because of the extra skin rubbing against my penis; is there a sex toy such as a cock ring or something that could pull back my foreskin during intercourse?

thank you in advanced

Hi James. I'm not aware of any special devices that hold back the foreskin during sex. You may want to try using a condom for a few days until the skin heals. After your penis becomes erect, retract the foreskin and slip the condom over your penis. While this should hold the foreskin in place, the unfortunate side is that you will lose some sensitivity.

Hi, my name is Steve and Iam 21 and uncircumsized and have a forkskin. Can I have the forskin removed and is it a possible way that I can make my penius grow.

Hello Steve,

While most circumcisions are performed during infancy it is possible to become circumcised at an older age. You'd need to speak to a doctor about your options. It will not however have an impact on penis growth. Whether you have a foreskin or not, there are several methods available to help naturally increase your size. Visit our page on Top Recommendations for Penis Enlargement to learn more.

Hi - My name is Sam and I'm 22 years of age. I'm not circumcised. I have been cleaning my penis under the foreskin since puberty. As with most guys, I masturbate. I clean it afterward most of the time. For about 6 months now it's been giving out a foul odor. I clean it with water and soap over and over again, but still the smell is still there. What can I do?

Thank you for your time!

Hi Sam,

The penis can generate an unpleasant odor if not cleaned regularly and thoroughly. You should always take extra care when cleaning the penis and be sure to wash in those hard to reach places like between the skin folds. It's also advisable to clean the penis using an antibacterial soap. Keep in mind that in order for the antibacterial components in soaps to work properly you must leave it on for at least two minutes before washing it off.

hi,after reviewing so many opinions over the size issue,to which lots of men in the world do worry about;what are the true opinions from women over the size issue,and do women talk about there partners size and make fun of them about it?

Hi Jamie,

I'm sure that many women have different opinions about penis size. Some probably prefer larger sizes while others are not as concerned. You might want to read the article written by our very own LoveRat who wrote about her feelings on penis size:

Why Women Love a Big Penis

acually can answer james question a penis ring does help ive used them thier purpose is to make you penis stay erect longer but if you put on the ring when you are fully erect like your suposed to it makes the penis 2x more sensitive and it does hold your forskin back for the most part because the ring restricts blood some from going back away from your penis longer harder more sensitive erection and keeps forskin at bay for the most part. they feel great i sudjest you try it

Hello. This question is regarding my boyfriend who is circumcised. I love him very much, so the whole thing doesn't bother me too much, but I also worry about him. His penis tends to give off a fairly bad odor. He washes regularly, and I join him in the washing process, but even still the smell continues. There is no visual smegma and his foreskin pulls back a significant amount. Any suggestions on what is occurring and/or how to maybe stop this issue? This has been a regular occurrence for as long as we have been together (7 months.) Thank you so much. (:

Hi Brittney,

You might want to have him try washing his penis with an antibacterial soap such as Dial. It's important to also completely dry the area after cleaning. If he wears tight briefs he might also consider switching to looser fitting boxers which allows more air circulation down there. He can also apply an antifungal cream like Lotrimin to see if that helps. If the smell still persists then he may want to visit his doctor to make sure there isn't an infection causing the odor.

Hi I have a question about my husband he is not circumcised and his foreskin does not retract back and He has tried to pull it back and it causes him pain. After intercourse it is extremely sensitive, and it concerns me. Is there anything he can do? Is it ok just like that? We also have been trying to have children the past few years could that have anything to do with it? Thank you

Hi Lila,

From your description it sounds as if your husband may be suffering from a condition known as Phimosis. Treatment for this type of condition can include topical creams and even manual stretching to expand and loosen the foreskin. Whether there's a relation between this and your inability to conceive, I honestly couldn't say. It's best to consult a physician for proper diagnosis and treatment options.

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